5 Resolutions for Home Buyers in 2011
Is 2011 the year for you to become a home owner? If so, it’s time to begin thinking about the things you need in order to accomplish that goal. Here are five resolutions that will put you on track to buying a home next year.
Repeat after me…
Resolution #1: I will save up for up-front costs associated with buying a home.
While it is true you can buy a home without the full 20% deposit, home buyers should still make the effort to save for a sizeable down payment. A five percent or ten percent down payment is a step in the right direction. In addition, you will need to account for finances for closing costs. While some sellers will make concessions and pay it for home buyers, not all will, so be prepared for the cost. A good rule of thumb when looking at closing costs is two to four percent of the purchase price.
Resolution #2: I will get my credit in line.
The first step to improving your credit score is to know it. There are several free sites you can use to get your credit score, such as www.AnnualCreditReport.com. The next step will be to pay down/off your credit card debt. Paying down/off revolving debt looks better on your credit report. And be sure that your balance is 30% or less of your credit card limit. High balances, even with regular payments, do not help your final score.
Resolution #3: I will find a qualified agent to represent me.
Buying and selling a home is a huge financial transaction, so it is important to work with a qualified real estate professional who will understand your needs, the real estate industry and the current market. You will want to reach out to your network, interview at least three agents and trust your instincts during selection. You can also visit Homes.com ‘Find a Real Estate Agent’ section to locate a professional in your area.
Resolution #4: I will be an educated home buyer.
Being an educated home buyer is really important for the process to run smoothly and ensure that you enjoy your home search experience. You can begin research on the Internet to learn the various vocabulary terms and each step in purchasing a home. Attending various courses for home buyers and homeowners is also beneficial.
Resolution #5: I will take my time and enjoy the process.
As a recent first time home buyer, I can attest that the home buying process can be stressful, overwhelming and sometimes chaotic. That being stated, you will still need to take the time and enjoy the home search process. Whenever you feel overwhelmed, take a step back and relax. This is your buying experience, and you will ultimately be living in the place you decide.